KOPISCH, August
(b. 1799, Breslau, d. 1853, Berlin)

Biography

German painter and poet known for his Gedichte (1836; "Poems") and Allerlei Geister (1848; "All Kinds of Spirits"), poetry based on legends and fairy tales and written with a simplicity and appeal that made it widely popular. In 1815 he began studying painting at the Prague academy, but an injury to his hand damaged his prospects of success as an artist, and he turned to literature.

After residences in Dresden and Vienna Kopisch studied painting and archaeology in Italy (1823-28), where, at Naples, he became close friend with the poet August Graf von Platen-Hallermünde. He was an expert swimmer, which led him, in company with Ernst Fries, to discover the "Blue Grotto" of Capri.

In 1828 he settled at Berlin and was granted a pension by Frederick William IV of Prussia, who in 1838 conferred upon him the title of professor.